Wine makes me Happy

:smiley: :smiley:

As a counterbalance to the ‘Meldrew’ thread, let’s have a thread to record when wine makes us happy. It can be memories, experiences, visits, people or even a good old bargain or a wine that really surprised you in a good way! Go for it!!

14 Likes

Loving the Thursday positivity!

My wife and I travelled to South Africa for our honeymoon back in August, 2015. We overnighted in Franschhoek to sample some of the local wines and ended up on a wine tram, visiting some 5 or 6 different estates!

This was in their winter so they were glad of the custom and were very attentive. A stunning location, lovely mediterranean climate and some of the best pinotage I’ve ever drunk. It’ll stay forever crystallised in my mind as one of the most fun trips!

15 Likes

Just the ritual of opening an old bottle of port… removing the capsule and feeling the weight (they used to be made of lead), wiping off the lead residue, and then carefully extracting the cork … very satisfying to get it out in one piece. And then decanting and taking in those rich smells as you pour. I find the anticipation just as satisfying as the port itself, which feels like drinking a small piece of history.

19 Likes

Ritual is a spot on description!

My favourite ritual is the weekly matching of food and wine - sometimes vice versa. We usually plan our meals a week ahead (amongst other benefits, it reduced our food waste to pretty much zero), and sitting in the lounge in the evening, thinking about what bottles would work with which meal is a blissful activity :relieved:

19 Likes

I’m in total agreement with this and not just something like port. I know screwcaps are technically better than corks. But, whether they’re natural or diam or whatever, the whole ritual of cutting or otherwise removing the capsule and pulling the cork is something special that I’d hate to lose. I watched a video of a sommelier showing how to open a screwcap one time and I really don’t know how she kept a straight face!

12 Likes

I agree. I usually start my drinking on a Thursday after a few dry days in the first half of the week, so this ritual signals the beginning of the weekend for me (can always get through Fridays in work).

BUT in the spirit of @AnaGramWords’s positivity there’s also something immensely satisfying about the ‘crunch’ of opening a screw cap and having instant access to the loveliness inside, especially with a nice bottle of white on a warm summer’s day :sunny:

11 Likes

Yes, and as time goes on that Pavlovian response will only get stronger.

3 Likes

Also opening a bottle of fizz, not with a pop or a loud hiss, but with a slow psss

9 Likes

Yes definitely the anticipation when removing the cork or twisting of the screw cap.

Having a **** it! moment and opening the most expensive bottle of wine in the house on a tuesday with takeaway pizza. Joy.

It was a bottle of Malartic Legraviere 2010 with a smoked chicken pizza from Basillico last time it happened.

22 Likes

The annual ritual of trawling through ‘my reserves’ the month before the next yearly bill is due, deciding what to pull and the feeling of childlike anticipation on the days before its eventual arrival !

17 Likes

This, and especially the vice versa bit. I love thinking of what food to eat with the wine to be served, rather than the other way round. I’d say that we end up planning the majority of our entertaining that way.

8 Likes

I’m more **** it and see what i fancy in the moment rather than planning. Don’t usually bother thinking too much about the food pairing unless its obviously not going to work!

2 Likes

I’m the same, partly of necessity; I’m a veggie and a red wine drinker…

5 Likes

I’m the same as @MikeFranklin, vegetarian and a red wine drinker (I’m not great at food pairing).

I do enjoy pulling a bottle from the wine fridge with some ageing on it.

6 Likes

Oh come on, is there really no space for a GOM?

OK, then it might be my first taste of Yquem at 18 years old, the scent filled the room.

Bizarrely, compared to that, my other big recollection is a lovely bottle of Domain de la Bongran. Partly because of the beautiful setting on a summer evening at Hintlesham Hall, partly because I never realised a Macon could taste so damned good…

6 Likes

I love opening bottles that remind me of people and places. Especially people who are no longer with us.

For example Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a bottle of my father’s favourite Barbaresco - the Produttori. I have kept one bottle of the 1976 which was the last vintage I drank with him @ Christmas 1984. He passed away the following year. No idea what it will be like but I plan on opening it in September 2025 - on what would have been his 100th birthday. It will bring a smile to my face even if the wine is now vinegar.

Wine was only served at Christmas in our house. My Dad knew nothing about it other than he liked a good red. How he stumbled on the Produttori I will never know. Nor do I know where he bought it. All I recall is that he’d come home with a couple of Produttori for him and a “Spanish Sauternes” for Mum. I always smile when I open the Christmas Day dessert wine thinking how Mum would have preferred it with the Turkey!

35 Likes

Well that’s almost impossible to follow, but I’ll try!

There is nothing quite - because wine, like life, is all about degrees - quite like the taste of Jurançon, after an absence, to make my heart and my spirits soar. And, in truth, it’s always been that way. From the first bottle I had in the 90’s to the last I had last week.

Sure, Sauternes, amongst others, may have the concentration, the oomph, and the plaudits, but truly it, they, will never come close to the broad-spectrum complexity that Jurançon can deliver when done just right.

…but there is an important caveat to that; It must be rationed, because the flavour, the experience, the memory of it somewhere in my mind is something to live up to. It Is too special to waste willy nilly.

And, most importantly, after the OP, it makes me happy, more than any other :grinning:

12 Likes

Aside from the joy of the cork pulling ritual there is another special wine situation that makes me exceptionally happy. I’ll see if I can explain it.

When I open a really top quality bottle of wine it is certainly likely to make me happy but generally not exceptionally so as that is exactly what I am expecting with such a bottle. What makes me exceptionally happy is when I open what I expect to be a good but unexceptional bottle, say a sub £20 bottle, and as soon as I take that first mouthful I get one of those; Oh. My. Goodness! moments when that expected good bottle turns out to be truly special.

This is not always repeatable as the experience can be a combination of wine quality, mood, company, situation etc. But those moments are special and give me a deeper sort of vinous happiness than almost any other.

22 Likes

I think that’s part of the joy. I am usually quite (overly) careful with what I drink and when, so just grabbing a classed Bordeaux or a fancy Barolo to drink with pizza feels way more subversive (and subversive of myself) which adds to the joy of drinking the really good wine.

5 Likes